Tajdar Junaid What Colour Is Your Raindrop

Tajdar Junaid What Colour Is Your Raindrop
Remember that quirky movie with the two unconventionally attractive leads who take forever to realize they're meant to be together? Remember how you kept saying how good the soundtrack was? Well Tajdar Junaid's solo debut, What Colour Is Your Raindrop (sans question mark), is that soundtrack.

The Calcutta-based multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, composer, and producer is no stranger to movie soundtracks. His work has appeared in various award-winning Bollywood features and two songs from What Colour Is Your Raindrop are already earmarked for a forthcoming Hollywood film.

The five instrumental and four vocal tracks on this album are masterful, slow-building meditations on Indian and Western classical music, rock, blues and up-tempo folk. "Though I Know," the first track, is one of those catchy sing-alongs that's still in your head the next day, while "Aisle" and "Daastan" set the mood before "Mockingbird" (with Greg Johnson on vocals) provides epiphany and catharsis. The title track and "The First Year" feel transitory and usher the on-screen lovers through seasonal adventures "Ekta Golpo" (featuring Anusheh Anadil and Satyaki Banerjee) and "Aamna" before the unexpected drama of "Prelude to Poland."

Although a dynamite song in its own right, complete with an Urdu poem recited by Tajdar's father, hard-rocking last track "Yadon Ki Pari" (featuring Junaid Ahmad) doesn't quite fit on this particular record. But hell, the credits are rolling and who's paying attention anyway?

Using no less than 18 musicians and an inventive cross-section of Indian, African, South American, and Western instruments, including a charango, a 10-string South American mandolin, What Colour Is Your Raindrop tells a beautiful story and defies easy categorization. (Independent)